Donald Trump on Wednesday night assured CNN’s Don Lemon that there will be exceptions to his proposed ban on all Muslims visiting the United States.
While defending his plan this week, Trump was shaky on the details of who exactly would be barred from entering the country. He indicated throughout several interviews that he would exempt athletes and foreign leaders and clarified that Muslim U.S. citizens would be allowed to return to the U.S. from overseas.
Lemon on Wednesday asked if he would allow foreign diplomats who are Muslim into the country.
“Oh, certainly exceptions can be made,” Trump responded. “We’re not going to say, ‘You can’t come into the country.'”
And Trump confirmed that he would allow Muslim athletes into the U.S. when asked by Lemon.
“Of course there will be exceptions. You can’t keep people out like that. There will certainly be exceptions made,” Trump said.
The CNN host also asked Trump how he would identify Muslims trying to enter the U.S., noting that Trump had said that U.S. customs agents would simply ask people if they are Muslim. Trump told Lemon that there would be paperwork and extensive questioning for people visiting or immigrating to the country.
At another point in the interview, Lemon asked Trump if he is racist.
“I am the least racist person that you have ever met,” Trump responded. “I am the least racist person.”
“Are you bigoted in any way?” Lemon asked.
“I don’t think so, no,” Trump replied. “I don’t think so.”
Finally, Lemon asked Trump if he is Islamophobic.
“No, not at all,” Trump said. “I’m a person who happens to be very smart and I happen to have a certain street sense.”
Watch part of the interview via CNN: